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Thursday, 5 August 2010

Does it matter whether rulers are Christians?

The proposition, still held, and publicly advanced by many Christians in Australia even today, that Christians will automatically make better rulers than those who are outside the faith, was current in the sixteenth century and was dismissed by Pilgram Marpeck an Anabaptist theologian and municipal engineer in a passage that represents him at his most eloquent.
There are many rulers, many temporal and spiritual tyrants who while appearing to be Christian, violate, judge and condemn. They run ahead of Christ and seize his power like thieves and murderers, they rob him of his honor and glory and arrogate it to themselves. They rule before [they have known] patience distress and suffering even though tribulation has to precede glory. They become powerful before they have humbled themselves, they rule and govern before they serve, they condemn and judge before they have judged themselves.  (The Writings of Pilgram Marpeck, 416 )

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